Thompson EJ, Williams DM, Walker AJ, Mitchell RE, Niedzwiedz CL, Yang TC, Huggins CF, Kwong ASF, Silverwood RJ, Di Gessa G, Bowyer RCE, Northstone K, Hou B, Green MJ, Dodgeon B, Doores KJ, Duncan EL, Williams FMK, OpenSAFELY Collaborative , Steptoe A, Porteous DJ, McEachan RRC, Tomlinson L, Goldacre B, Patalay P, Ploubidis GB, Katikireddi SV, Tilling K, Rentsch CT, Timpson NJ, Chaturvedi N, Steves CJ
Nat Commun 13 (1) 3528 [2022-06-28; online 2022-06-28]
The frequency of, and risk factors for, long COVID are unclear among community-based individuals with a history of COVID-19. To elucidate the burden and possible causes of long COVID in the community, we coordinated analyses of survey data from 6907 individuals with self-reported COVID-19 from 10 UK longitudinal study (LS) samples and 1.1 million individuals with COVID-19 diagnostic codes in electronic healthcare records (EHR) collected by spring 2021. Proportions of presumed COVID-19 cases in LS reporting any symptoms for 12+ weeks ranged from 7.8% and 17% (with 1.2 to 4.8% reporting debilitating symptoms). Increasing age, female sex, white ethnicity, poor pre-pandemic general and mental health, overweight/obesity, and asthma were associated with prolonged symptoms in both LS and EHR data, but findings for other factors, such as cardio-metabolic parameters, were inconclusive.